Measuring rainfall, temperature and wind speed is second nature to most farmers, keeping records and analysing the data collected (if at all) is generally not. Traditionally there is only one ‘weather station’ located on a property.
Having more than one doesn’t seem to make sense let alone the additional cost. Official weather stations provide a great overview and alerts but are not capable of providing the microclimate information you need to manage your business. As a result, you are probably not collecting the right information from the right place at the right time to fully understand your specific microclimate.
Putting the ‘smart’ in weather stations & soil moisture probes
With the advent of IoT (Internet of Things) and its impact on Agtech, the way we monitored, collected, recorded, stored and analysed information has changed. Not only are we able to collect data from more than one ‘weather station’, but we can also overlay this information with other data from other sensors on the farm such as soil probes, to obtain a deeper understanding of what is happening in the immtechediate microenvironment. And most importantly the data we collect is done so on a consistent and regular basis.
mySmart Farm in action
At our mySmart Farm in Pokolbin (vineyard, olive grove and cattle) we’ve ‘planted’ a number of Environment Collection Stations (ECS – pronounced eggs!) around strategic points on the property. The property has a varied topography including high and low lying land, a large dam and an easterly aspect. It, therefore, makes sense to collect data from a variety of points to obtain a comprehensive picture of the farms micro-region. As a result of the deliberate placement of ECS’ around the property – which also include soil probes – we’ve been able to make some solid decisions based on the data collected in terms of irrigation and placement of new crops.